“He’s biting at my heels!” Pressure brings out the best in Boston United keeper Crook

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Peter Crook has caught the eye with his early Boston United performances – but the keeper knows he will have to stay at his best to remain between the sticks.

The former Harrogate Town and Hyde keeper has been given the nod since his arrival this summer, at the expense of last season’s captain and Player of the Year George Willis.

George Willis. Photo: Eric Brown.

George Willis. Photo: Eric Brown.

And he says that having to fight for a place will only spur on both goalkeepers.

“George is a great keeper, we get on really well as well,” Crook said. “We’ve trained with each other since the first Saturday of pre-season and he’s a great keeper.

“He’s going to be biting at my heels so that puts the pressure on me to perform on a big stage.”

Crook is no stranger to the National League North following his time with Harrogate.

But after dropping down two divisions to join Hyde, and winning a promotion in the process, Crook still wants to prove he has what it takes at this level.

“I have the experience. I’ve played England C and been in the Team of the Year in this league so I know what it’s all about,” he said.

“I felt I had unfinished business in this league and can more than give the team a boost. We want to go on and do something big this season.”

While Crook is building a relationship with Willis, he also has plenty of praise for goalkeeping coach Rich Lawrence.

“Rich is a great coach and likes to listen to both me and George, what we want and what we want from training,” he said of the former Sheffield Wednesday trainee.

“He keeps us on our toes and gives us good feedback.”

There is, however, a greater sense of familiarity with the defence playing in front of Crook.

“I’ve played with Aingey (Simon Ainge), Shielsy (Luke Shiels), and Jacko (former Scunthorpe United youth teammate Ashley Jackson) before,” he added.

“And I know of Alex (Whittle) and Mids (Ben Middleton).

“We’re all familiar with how each other plays. I think that’s great going into a long season.”